Update: Facebook Supscription Messaging is now Facebook News Messaging.
Subscription broadcast messaging is a feature in MobileMonkey’s free chatbot platform. But subscription messaging isn’t a Facebook Messenger marketing freebie, it’s an approved status granted by Facebook.
Want to see if your Facebook Page and Messenger chatbot qualifies for subscription messaging permissions? Read this guide and download the cheat sheet to ace your application.
Today I want to talk about a pressing and important issue for Facebook marketers and advertisers — Facebook subscription messaging.
We’ll review what subscription messaging is, who can do subscription messaging in Facebook Messenger, and how to use it as a high-impact marketing tactic.
This guide covers:
- What Is Facebook Subscription Messaging?
- Who Can Send Subscription Messaging Broadcasts in Facebook Messenger?
- How to Apply for Facebook Subscription Messaging in 2 Steps
- Tips for Writing a Facebook Subscription Messaging Request
Jump to each section with the links above or read on for details.
What Is Facebook Subscription Messaging?
Keep in mind that Facebook Subscription Messaging is now Facebook News Messaging. We’ll first explain Facebook Subscription Messaging here, but you can read up on what Facebook News Messaging is below this section.
The explanation starts with the 24+1 Facebook Messenger rule.
In the first 24 hours of a user opting in to messaging, you can send unlimited updates, promotional and non-promotional.
After 24 hours, you can send unlimited non-promotional updates and one promotional follow up. This is called the 24+1 Rule and what Facebook calls “standard messaging.”
When you create Facebook Messenger chat blasts, you pick a purpose of the blast. There are 17 messaging purposes, btw:
Promotional chat blasts are available to anyone, limited to the first 24 hours, plus one any time after.
You can also pay to send a promotional chat blasts any time via Facebook sponsored message ads.
Meanwhile non-promotional chat blasts are available to all businesses, and you can view all the Facebook Messenger messaging tags here.
All of them … except for one: non-promotional subscription messages.
The non-promotional subscription message can be sent by businesses that have been approved by Facebook for subscription messaging.
What is Facebook News Messaging?
News messages allow news publishers to send regular news updates to their subscribers in Messenger. This feature is only available for registered news Pages under the Facebook News Page Index (NPI).
Pages registered with the News Page Index don’t need to apply for news messaging permission.
News messaging apply to news content only, and must not be used for promotional content. Examples of promotional content include, but are not limited to the following:
- Subscription offers
- Content produced by or that promotes a third party (e.g., branded content, affiliate marketing)
To send news messages, NPI registered pages need to use the NON_PROMOTIONAL_SUBSCRIPTION message tag.
But keep in mind that the use of news messaging outside of these approved use cases may result in restrictions on your ability to send news messages. So be careful!
What is the Facebook News Page Index (NPI)?
Facebook’s news Page index is a foundational step to help Facebook identify pages that primarily publish news content on the platform.
Therefore, any Facebook Page that primarily creates journalism should be registered as a news Page on Facebook.
One of the benefits of registering as a news Page on Facebook is that registered Pages may be eligible for products and services specifically designed for news publishers. Other benefits will evolve over time and registering news Pages will allow Facebook to understand the full breadth and needs of the news ecosystem on the platform.
How to Register for the Facebook News Page Index (NPI)
Here’s how to get started registering for Facebook’s NPI, or News Page Index.
Any admin with access to a Page in Business Manager should see the “News Pages” option under the “Registrations” tab in Business Settings. This is where you can begin the process of registering your news Pages.
If you’re not already an admin, see this article: How To Add an Admin to Your Facebook Page
Also note that before you can register a news Page, you must first verify your domain and verify your business with Facebook.
In addition to submitting news Pages, publishers also have the opportunity to share optional information about their Page, like logos and editorial policies.
To get started registering for the Facebook News Page Index, go here: Register your News Page
Who Can Send Subscription Messaging Broadcasts in Facebook Messenger?
Facebook has an application and review process for Facebook Business Pages that would like to send subscription messages. Businesses receive subscription messaging permissions at the page-level.
If your page is approved for subscription messaging by Facebook, you’re free to send subscription chat blasts with your MobileMonkey bot.
Which leads us to …
How to Apply for Facebook Subscription Messaging in 2 Steps
The good news is that it doesn’t cost a business anything to apply for Facebook subscription messaging. And the application process is fairly short. I’ll show you how to apply for subscription messaging in 2 steps.
The trickier news is that Facebook has a review process for subscription messaging applications, and in our experience, it can take many applications before a page is approved.
You’ll want to take special care and pay close attention in putting together a thoughtful application. Follow these instructions to get approved for Facebook subscription messaging.
Step 1: Request Subscription Messaging in Facebook Page Settings
From your Facebook Page, go to Settings:
Go to Messenger Platform:
And from Advanced Messaging Features, request subscription messaging:
Step 2: Complete the Short 3-Part Application for Subscription Messaging
The subscription messaging request has three parts — pick a category, describe the nature of your chatbot, and give a couple examples.
The three categories to choose from are:
- Personal Tracking
For the most part, MobileMonkey customers will choose News.
The other categories are too specific to generally apply. Business bots help customers through relevant updates and industry information.
In the details section, describe the information and updates services your chatbot provides, like blog updates.
For MobileMonkey we said something like “MobileMonkey chatbot sends periodic alerts on important marketing industry news.”
Then provide a couple of examples of the helpful news blasts sent by your chatbot:
MobileMonkey’s examples were something like:
“Alert: GDPR regulations come into effect in 24 hours. Check the website for details.”
“The American marketing association has released their annual state of the industry study. Check website for details.”
When your Page has been approved, you’ll see this notice under Advanced Messaging Features:
Tips for Writing a Facebook Subscription Messaging Request
By applying for subscription messaging, you’re agreeing not to send promotional messages under the non-promotional blast purpose.
It is important that you not send promotional stuff outside of the 24+1 rule.
The way that Facebook checks is with machine learning. If you sending too much promotional stuff you’ll get reviewed.
How long does subscription messaging review take?
Because the subscription request is a manual review process, the amount of time to be approved varies. We’ve seen approvals completed within days, or take months.
What happens if you don’t apply for Facebook subscription messaging?
We recommend all our customers apply for subscription messaging to get permissions to send non-promotional and 24+1 promotional messages.
If you don’t apply, or aren’t approved, you have the option to send sponsored promotional messages. You’ll basically have to pay for every message you send.
Do you have to request subscription messaging for every Page?
Facebook is switching to page-level approval, so yes, requests must be made for each Page. Go into each Page’s settings to find the request form.
How can I tell if my chatbot is a “News,” “Productivity” or “Personal tracking” chatbot?
The Facebook for Developers documentation describes the different chatbot categories.
“Productivity” chatbots use integrations for managing personal productivity like calendar events and reminders.
“Personal Tracking” chatbots are more specifically tied to “personal trackers” that give updates on individuals’ health, wellness, fitness and finance.
As you can tell, subscription messaging is an important thing to apply for in your Facebook page. If you have any questions, join the community and ask in the Facebook group.
Important Next Steps
- Create a free chatbot today with the limited time MobileMonkey Free Forever Special Edition.
- Talk and learn about chatbots with other enthusiasts. Join MobileMonkey Island, our Facebook group of 40K marketers and entrepreneurs who are ready to support you.
- Advance your marketing performance with Chatbot University, a free chatbot tutorial and training area for chat marketers.